How to mind dump

   how to use the mind dump to increase your creativity.

A simple way to clear your mind to make way for creativity.

I do sometimes find it difficult to concentrate, and to focus, or even have time to think!
I find myself lying in bed sometimes with my head going around and around making it hard to sleep. Or during the day, I have so much to do, sometimes I don’t know what I should be doing next!

I guess, we all lead busy lives trying to balance our work, leisure, family, friends and even daily chores.
By the end of a busy day, our minds can be loaded, or even overloaded, with a lot of information that can lead to exhaustion and limited concentration.

At this point, all you want is to be alone and clear your head. Some people run or go to the gym which gives them time to think. And some practice meditation. Creative people may write or paint. A very good technique, that is quick and easy and useful for everybody is to do a mind dump.

You know that when you tidy up your desk or your kitchen work surfaces, or when you shut down all the windows on your laptop, all the apps on your phone and start again that is is refreshing and easier to be productive, well this is how to do that for your mind.

make room for creativity

A 15 to 20-minute mind dump will clear your mind, capture your thoughts and ideas, make room for creativity and help you relax. This is a two-part blog. In this part, I will tell you how to do a mind dump which is useful for every facet of your life. In the second part, I will tell you how to use the mind dump to increase your creativity.

 How to take control

Take control of all the thoughts, ideas, worries, dreams, memories and everything else that is running around in your head and get those ideas into some sort of order.

You should allow 15 to 30 minutes for this. Before you start – decide on your writing medium. For me, a notebook works best and I find handwriting important and the slowness helps me to connect with my emotions. But for you, It may be a piece of paper, pencil, and eraser, or your laptop.

Next, pick up a pen and get the creative juices flowing.  Just start writing the random thoughts that run around in your brain. It can be a task you need to do, a phone call you need to make, a dream remembered from last night. Write anything and everything that comes to mind. No thought should be excluded.

– And this is important. If you think “I have nothing to write “  or “I’d love a coffee” then write it down.

“The kitchen needs to be tidied”. “The car needs to be washed”. “The kids will be home at 4“. “My back is sore today”. “Will we have pizza tonight?”. “I need to buy some more watercolors”. “It is cold today” you can write it down.

I love the whole experience of writing by hand— the smell of a notebook the ink on my fingers, Ooh La La.

 

Keep writing and keep writing for a minimum of 15 minutes, or you have filled 4 pages or until you have nothing left to say whichever takes LONGER. Don’t stop if there are still thoughts to write down.

You will be amazed at what comes out. Maybe not at first but when you see the effect it has you will be so happy you started.

Now you have the basics!

Many creative people like to do this first thing every morning. (This technique is also known as morning pages, have a look at Julia Cameron’s Morning Pages. ) You can do it in bed, before coffee, before toothbrush, before everything. This helps to capture the dreams of the night before, which are often very revealing and always very interesting. It can help to capture emotions and feelings.

If you are like me, you do it in the evening. Busy business people like to do this at the end of the week. It captures all the tasks and decisions, all the work to be done, the problems and issues, and so leaves the mind clear for the weekend.

Many people make this a routine, that they do every morning for 90 days, or every Friday before they leave work, or whenever suits them. Some people set a minimum time limit – I have said 15 minutes, but it could be longer. I prefer to write 3 to 4 pages and just when I feel like it, years ago I did it for a whole year. You may ask, a whole year? well, I did it because it really works. The benefits of mind dumping are many, it can help you discover your creativity,  you can get much better ideas and you will make more art.

The important thing is just to do it.

sketchbook, watercolor and creativity

TIP  If you are using your laptop, it can be a good idea to put the new stuff at the top. Don’t scroll all the way to the bottom and write. Start at the top so that the older stuff is at the bottom.

I hope you found it useful and like to try it out. Did you know that you get a printable digital artwork,  and a calendar and more if you sign up for the free color course  Free color course  If you are on a mobile phone and have problems signing up you can go here and If you like this post, feel free to share with your family and friends on Facebook.

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6 thoughts on “How to mind dump

  1. I love this idea, Magny. My problem as a writer is that whenever I pick up a pencil or pen to write something down, I have this expectation that it needs to sound amazing…eveb if I’m simply journaling about my life and all its stressors…and if I start writing and it sounds like crap, I get frustrated and stop. I like the idea of allowing oneself to write without the pressure of producing quality…to let everything that’s weighing you come out as it comes. I think I’ll need to try this sometime…focusing less on quality writing while “mind dumping” will do wonders for my creative process, I think!

    1. I’m so glad this idea works for you. Writing for most people is functional rather than creative. Lots of people will pick up a pen and paper to make the list for the supermarket, or to write a cheque. With the mind dump the writing is as functional as a supermarket list. It is just taking ideas from your head onto the paper. No one ever has to see it. It is a tool and like a hammer it does not have to be pretty.

      One way to avoid the conflict of writing as an art and writing as a tool would be to record yourself. most laptops have a tool do do this build in, but I really believe that the mind dump would be a great way for you to find the boundry between creative writing and functional writing. Hope you give it a try, I love to know how it goes for you.
      And if writing is your thing, you should check out http://juliacameronlive.com.

  2. I do the same thing! Most days I write in a notebook in the morning. But there are some days that my head is swimming with ideas and projects and to do items. Those times I write everything down. Even as I approach the end of the list I start to feel better. As I write the items, I know which items should be prioritized, which are just random ideas for another time. Some items I’ll put a to do by date next to. Then over the course of the next few weeks I’ll look at the list and either check projects off or eliminate. It clears my mind of them if I make a conscious decision not to move forward with an idea. Instead of letting it continue to rattle around my head!

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